FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Friday, March 6, 2015

DCA Division of Fire Safety Reminds Residents to
"Change Your Clocks, Change Your Batteries"

Sunday, March 8th Marks the Return of Daylight Saving Time

TRENTON, NJ - The New Jersey Department of Community Affairs (DCA), which oversees the Division of Fire Safety, is today reminding residents that the return to Daylight Saving Time is the very best time to change your smoke and CO alarm batteries. If you are equipped with special ten-year lithium batteries, than in both cases, make certain you test the alarms as well.

"We think that the annual time changes in spring and fall are excellent times to not only check and/or change your smoke and CO alarm batteries, but to check and make certain they are operating as well," said William Kramer, Jr. Acting Director and State Fire Marshal.

Kramer notes that the presence of working smoke alarms on every level of the home are your best insurance to receiving ample warning to evacuate your home in the case of a fire.

"Residential fires remain the leading instance of fire in our state and the leading cause of fire fatality," added Kramer. "A working smoke alarm is designed to warn you, affording you and your loved ones enough time to escape. Fire reaches critical mass in seconds and is unforgiving of any delay in getting out of its path."

Kramer also notes that it is an excellent idea to look into advances that have been made in smoke and CO alarm technology. In addition to the now widespread use of long-life lithium batteries are the appearance of innovative devices such as the Nest, which uses human voice warnings in addition to visual prompts. Additionally, the creation of apps for smart phones can now act in the same way as conventional smoke alarms to give warning.

The Division of Fire Safety serves as the central fire service agency in the State. The Division is responsible for the development and enforcement of the State Uniform Fire Code, as well as engaging the public on community risk reduction strategies, assisting in fire department preparedness and conducting firefighter training programs